Posts Tagged ‘Fiesta


Ford to Debut Fiesta Ads Tomorrow in Small-Car Push (Update2)

By Keith Naughton

May 17 (Bloomberg) — Ford Motor Co., the top seller of pickup trucks in the U.S., is seeking to build credibility as a maker of small cars with a new advertising campaign for its Fiesta subcompact.

A Fiesta commercial will debut tomorrow during Fox television’s “American Idol,” and dealers will begin selling the company’s first subcompact in more than a decade in the U.S. this summer. Ford will introduce a redesigned version of its Focus compact early next year. The Fiesta and Focus were developed by Ford’s European operations.

“This is an opportunity to change the perception of the Ford brand,” Matt VanDyke, Ford’s U.S. marketing director, said today during a press conference in the company’s home city of Dearborn, Michigan. “We don’t have natural showroom traffic on small cars.”

The Fiesta, which starts at $13,995, is an attempt to turn around Ford’s history of making little or no money selling small cars to U.S. consumers. With rising oil prices boosting sales of those cars, Ford and General Motors Co. are rolling out models to meet drivers’ changing tastes while delivering a profit.

“It’s a very important launch for the near-term future of Ford,” John Wolkonowicz, an auto analyst at IHS Global Insight in Lexington, Massachusetts, said today in an interview. “If they can’t sell a lot of these, they’ll have to go back to the drawing board.”

‘Pretty Big Deal’

Fiesta commercials, with the slogan “It’s a pretty big deal,” will appear in the final four episodes of American Idol in the next two weeks, reaching more than 100 million viewers, VanDyke said. Ford is spending a “substantial” amount on the Fiesta campaign, which may be similar in size to promotions for Ford’s top-selling model, the F-series truck, VanDyke said.

Continue reading ‘Ford to Debut Fiesta Ads Tomorrow in Small-Car Push (Update2)’


Ford Fiesta production begins in converted pickup plant in Mexico

Ford Motor has finally begun production of a car that has more self-generated buzz than a mosquito, the 2011 Fiesta small car.

Fiesta four-door sedans and hatchbacks now are chugging down the line in Ford’s converted F-Series pickup plant at Cuautitlán, near Mexico City. Expect Fiestas — already on sale overseas — in U.S. showrooms in June. Sedan starts at $13,995, including $675 shipping. Hatchback comes with more standard equipment and starts at $15,795.

It’s a rival to Honda Fit and its ilk. Power is from a 120-horsepower, 1.6-liter four-cylinder. Ford says one version will get federal fuel-economy ratings of 30 mpg in town, 40 mpg on the highway.

Ford brought over some Euro-market versions last year and put them into the hands of folks who like to blab a lot on social media — Fiesta Agents, they were called — hoping for lots of grass-roots buzz. It worked. Google “2011 Ford Fiesta” and see for yourself.

Some were invited to script videos for Ford to produce. Our favorite, which you can click to watch above, is the one by Brittani — yes, that’s how she spells it — Taylor, self-described actress, cupcake addict and Fiesta driver, head-to-head comparo of the Fiesta and a Lamborghini. More of the humorous videos (we like the key fob) are here.

You can get USA TODAY’s Test Drive of the Fiesta here.

James R. Healey/Drive On


2011 Ford Fiesta: First Drive

By Sam Smith


At long last, the U.S.-spec Ford Fiesta is here. It is slightly heavier than its European counterpart, but it’s still the best small car you can buy in this country. Welcome to the party, America.

Full Disclosure: Ford flew a host of journalists to San Francisco and put them up in a nice hotel on the Embarcadero for the launch of the 2011 Fiesta. Since we live in the Bay Area, we simply drove downtown. We were offered a room anyway, which we accepted for the purposes of storing our gear and taking a late-afternoon nap. It was a nice room. It was a nice nap. And now we kind of want a Fiesta.

Let’s recap: The car you see here is the American-market version of the 2011 Ford Fiesta. It’s similar to the Ford Fiesta that was launched two years ago in Europe, but there are a few significant differences. This car will hit American dealers in a few short months. If you are possessed of a driver’s license and a functional brain, you will get yourself to your local Ford shop and arrange a test drive as soon as cars become available. You will not regret it.

In short, here’s the take-home: The Fiesta is flawed. But it is also fantastic.

Last year, Ford brought 100 Fiestas across the Atlantic and loaned them to “influential” social-media types for six months. The program was called the Fiesta Movement (one of the drivers was ex-Jalop Davey G. Johnson, a man we have never met in person butlike nonetheless); it was the beginning of a substantial marketing push designed to convey the message that Ford is not the company it once was, and that the Fiesta is not the type of car that the company once sold.

For the most part, this message was true. The Fiesta is a compact car the likes of which we have rarely seen in America — it is small on the outside, relatively roomy on the inside, good-looking, fashionable, and economical. It is not fast, but it can be made to do fast-car things. It’s nimble as hell, tossable as the day is long, and it makes you giggle when you spank it down a winding road. Also, it can hold four adults in comfort. If you wanted a new car that fit this definition in the past, you had to buy a Volkswagen Golf or move to Europe and buy an Escort/Fiesta/Renault Clio/Insert Excellent Continental Cheap Car Here.

In other words, Ford is this kind of company and has always made cars like this, but we haven’t always been able to buy them.

Continue reading ‘2011 Ford Fiesta: First Drive’


First Drive: 2011 Ford Fiesta (U.S. Spec)

Entertainment is provided by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with variable timing on both cams that helps pump out 120 horsepower and 112 pound-feet of torque. On paper, it doesn’t sound like all that much until you see the feathery 2600-pound curb weight. Careful gearing selections on the five-speed manual and six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmissions keeps the engine in its sweet spot and makes for reasonably peppy straight-line acceleration, especially if you wring it out to redline where the engine really shines. It’s the only engine available at launch and the only one Ford will talk about, but we’ve already seen spy shots of what appears to be an EcoBoost model testing outside of Dearborn, so we’re hopeful a more powerful model is on the way.

Continue reading ‘First Drive: 2011 Ford Fiesta (U.S. Spec)’


Sync to control 3 top Web sites


Ford said today that its Fiesta subcompact car that comes to market later this year will be the first to feature software that will allow its Sync in-car communications and entertainment technology to work with Twitter, Pandora and Stitcher.

The software, called App-Link, will enable drivers to use smart phones such as BlackBerries and iPhones to control all three popular Web-based services with voice commands.

Ford previously said it planned to offer the software but didn’t say when.

The Fiesta is expected to reach dealer showrooms by early summer, and Fiesta buyers will be able to download the software by the end of this year. Ford plans to introduce AppLink on all Sync-equipped vehicles next year.

Ford spokesman Alan Hall said many drivers already access Twitter, Pandora and Stitcher from their smart phones whiledriving.

“We have the platform that allows them to be used safer,” Hall said.

With the new software, Hall said, drivers can ask Sync to read their Twitter feeds through Orangatame Software’s application called OpenBeak. However, the system doesn’t allow the driver to respond.

Continue reading ‘Sync to control 3 top Web sites’


Ford says auto future hinges on electric car


Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford closed out the SAE World Congress on Thursday with an endorsement of the future of electric vehicles.

“All the early cars were electric,” said Ford, great-grandson of company founder Henry Ford, at the engineers’ conference. “They’ve been around really for the past century or so, but they really haven’t had mass-market appeal.”

• Ford beats VW, takes No. 1 spot in Europe

But Ford said the automotive industry is rapidly changing.

Ford, an ardent environmentalist who worked for years to change the carmaker’s culture so that it would embrace environmental goals, said new technology makes it possible to introduce electric vehicles that appeal to mainstream consumers.

“It appears that the biggest game-changer will be electric vehicles,” Ford said during a speech in Detroit. “Our plan includes the introduction of five new high-mileage vehicles.”

Ford said the automotive industry must introduce more fuel-efficient vehicles in order to meet the challenges of diminishing oil reserves, global warming and a desire by customers to spend less money on gas.

“The majority of our efforts are aimed at fuel-economy leadership,” Ford said. “We want to provide affordable fuel economy for millions of customers.”

Over the next three years, Ford plans to introduce a Transit Connect Electric commercial van, a Ford Focus electric vehicle, two new gasoline-electric hybrids and a plug-in hybrid.

Ford also said the company is committed to improving the fuel economy of all of its new vehicles.

This summer, Ford plans to launch the Ford Fiesta subcompact car. Ford has said it expects the Fiesta will get 40 m.p.g. on the highway and 30 m.p.g. in city driving.

Ford also is introducing technology in the car to help drivers get the most out of their vehicles.

On Thursday, Ford announced that the company is adding a new feature for the company’s navigation software called Eco-Route.

Eco-Route will map the most fuel-efficient route to a destination and can help drivers achieve fuel-economy gains of up to 15%, the company said.

The feature is part of Ford’s MyFord Touch, a new system that controls all entertainment, climate and information systems in the company’s vehicle.

In addition to introducing new technology, Ford is gaining market share both in the U.S. and Europe. Ford’s stock closed Thursday at $13.76 per share, up 41 cents from its close on Wednesday and more than four times higher than its 52-week low of $3.27 per share.

The company, which typically reports first-quarter earnings at the end of April, is expected to report a profit of 30 cents per share, according to a survey of 12 analysts by Thomson One Analytics.

“Nobody is getting cocky, or overconfident,” Ford said. “Because, frankly, we’ve only taken baby steps on the long journey to where we really need to go.”


PowerShift Transmission Production Begins, Driving Ford Small Car Fuel Economy Leadership

DEARBORN, Mich., March 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ –

  • Production of new PowerShift dual-clutch automatic transmission for new 2011 Ford Fiesta begins today, helping Ford deliver on its plan for offering fuel-saving six-speed transmissions across its product portfolio
  • Fiesta with PowerShift joins the 2011 Mustang Coupe V-6 as the second recent Ford vehicle to offer better fuel economy with an automatic transmission than a manual
  • PowerShift characteristics are particularly well-suited to smaller car applications, making the transmission a perfect fit for Fiesta and the upcoming Ford Focus
  • Advanced technology with energy-saving electromechanical actuation system minimizes friction helping PowerShift deliver an expected class-leading fuel economy

(Photo: )

Helping deliver on Ford Motor Company’s (NYSE: F) commitment to class-leading fuel economy and exceptional driving quality, production is launching today of the PowerShift dual-clutch automatic transmission for the 2011 Ford Fiesta.

The new dual-clutch automatic – the first six-speed transmission in the segment – will help the stylish Fiesta to deliver an expected best-in-class fuel economy rating of at least 40 mpg on the highway with the convenience of fully automatic shifting.

Continue reading ‘PowerShift Transmission Production Begins, Driving Ford Small Car Fuel Economy Leadership’

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